Home > San Francisco Bahá'í History > 'Abdu'l-Bahá in San Francisco > ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Visited California October 1912

October is a very special month for those of us living in California because it marks the anniversary of when ‘Abdu’l-Bahá visited our state during his journey across the United States in 1912. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá spent time in San Francisco, as well as many other locations across the state. Below is a chronology of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s activities while He was here. It might be fitting this month to reflect on ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s historic trip in 1912 or visit some of the same local sights and places where He also stood so many years ago.

NOTE: The talks in bold have been preserved the volume: The Promulgation of Universal Peace

October 3
  • Arrived in San Francisco after midnight at the Ferry Terminal and met by San Francisco Assembly chairperson
  • Transported to His residence at 1815 California Street, San Francisco and greeted by a few local Bahá’ís
  • Received visitors including Stanford University President David Starr Jordan who invited Him to speak at Stanford
  • Interviewed by a San Francisco Examiner reporter
  • Met with friends and children late in the afternoon and in the evening delivered addresses of welcome to the adults in Helen S. Goodall’s 1537 Jackson Street, Oakland home
October 4
  • Received many people, including Mrs. Mary C. Bell and Professor Ernest A. Rogers, and others from all the cities bout the Bay, at the 1815 California Street residence
  • Addressed, greeted, and welcomed them to His home
October 5
  • Met with friends throughout the day including Honorable J. Stitt Wilson, Mayor of Berkeley, Professor Rogers at California Street residence
  • Visited Lloyd’s Lake in Golden Gate Park.
  • Attended the regular Assembly meeting held each Saturday night at the Lick building, 35 Montgomery Street, where He delivered a most wonderful talk
October 6
  • Met with Mr. McCarthy at California Street residence
  • Spoke at the First Unitarian Church at Franklin & Geary Street, San Francisco 11 AM
  • Spoke at the First Congregational Church in Oakland at 12th and Clay Streets
October 7
October 8
  • Addressed students, faculty and others at Stanford University, Palo Alto.
  • Had lunch with Stanford University President, David Starr Jordan.
  • Visited Isabella C. Merriman and Mr. Clarence Reed in Palo Alto.
  • Spoke at the Unitarian Church, then located at the northeast corner of Canning Avenue at Cowper Street in Palo Alto
  • Spent the night as a guest of Mrs. Merriman at her daughter’s home in Palo Alto
October 9
  • Returned to San Francisco
  • Met with the Berkeley Short Story Club, a small literary group
  • Spoke at Berkeley High School at Allston Way and Grove Street, Berkeley.
October 10
  • Met with David Stone at California Street residence
  • Visited Charles Tinsley at his residence at 1247½ Webster Street, San Francisco
  • Met with Dr. Woodson Allen and Mrs. Goodall in automobile
  • Addressed the Open Forum
October 11
  • Consulted with Mrs. Goodall at Sutro Heights gardens
  • Addressed Theosophical Society in the Native Sons Building, Yosemite Hall, at 414 Mason Street, San Francisco
  • Visited Mr. and Mrs. William T. Grosse at 2115 Baker Street, San Francisco
  • Possibly visited Martin A. Meyer, the Rabbi of Temple Emanu-El at 2109 Baker Street, San Francisco
October 12
October 13
  • Spoke at the Reading Room for the Blind at 1665 Jackson Street, San Francisco
  • Visited the beach
  • Met with friends in the 1815 California Street parlor
October 14
  • Met with Kuwanichi Yamamoto and Japanese friends, and friends from Portland OR, Seattle and Spokane WA at California Street residence
  • Departed for Mrs. Phoebe Hearst’s home in Pleasanton
October 15
  • Stayed at Mrs. Hearst’s home in Pleasanton
  • Toured her house, gardens and nursery
  • Chanted a prayer at lunch at the request of guests and then addressed them, including Mrs. Hearst’s grandchildren
  • Went for automobile drive through the countryside
  • Addressed guests in the afternoon and evening
October 16
  • Spoke to the servants at Mrs. Hearst’s home and gave them cash mementos
  • Returned to San Francisco
  • Met with Portland, Seattle and Spokane friends at California Street residence
  • Spoke at the Century Club at 1355 Franklin Street, San Francisco on the rights and education of women
  • Walked along the shores of Lake Merritt, Oakland
  • Met with Mr. and Mrs. E.T. Cooper and their 4 children at Mrs. Goodall’s home
  • Gave the Feast of ‘Ilm at Mrs. Goodall’s home in Oakland
October 17
  • Met with a gentleman from India at Mrs. Goodall’s Oakland home
  • Left for San Francisco early in the morning
  • Lost His seal so all His Tablets and Writings made during this time were hand signed by Him
  • Spoke to the friends in the morning and evening
  • Received guests for private interviews and talks including Mrs. C. B. Wise, Miss Ramona Allen, Betty, Marie Barr, and Portland, Seattle and Spokane people at the California Street residence
October 18
  • Spoke with the friends from Portland and Seattle at this California Street residence
  • Departed for Los Angeles by train accompanied by friends
  • Spoke with friends at Hotel Lankershim, Los Angeles in the evening
October 19
  • Met with journalists at Lankershim Hotel, Los Angeles
  • Gathered the friends from Bakersfield to San Diego at the Hotel Lankershim to accompany Him to Inglewood Cemetery by tram
  • Visited Thornton Chase’s grave in Inglewood, California
  • Spoke with a multitude of people and reporters at the Lankershim Hotel
  • Spoke with friends in 2 smaller gatherings about firmness in the Covenant and spiritual transformation
  • Spoke with a larger audience about the Teachings of the Supreme Pen and the greatness of the Cause
  • Received some elite and wealthy people who were fascinated and attracted to Him
  • Spoke at the Bahá’í headquarters in the Grosse Building about service to the Cause of God in the evening
  • He was so exhausted at night that he could not take supper
October 20
  • Took a site seeing tour to Pasadena and Busch Sunken Gardens
  • Addressed friends about the purpose of being a Bahá’í and firmness in the Covenant
  • Met with Theosophist lady and Mrs. George Witte of Long Beach at Lankershim Hotel, Los Angeles during the day
  • Churches and clubs sent messages to prolong His stay and speak to their audiences
  • Children were brought to Him and receive His blessings and protection
  • Made a farewell address in the afternoon
  • Departed from Los Angeles at 5:00 PM
October 21
  • Did not sleep well during the night but was deep in thought
  • Returned to San Francisco
  • Spoke with the friends early in the morning and throughout the day
  • Met with groups of believers in His room
  • Addressed friends at California Street residence including Seattle people, Takeshi Kanno (Japanese poet), Portland friends
  • Spoke with, 3 doctors -Dr. Woodsen Allen, Dr, Warren Allen and Dr. Joseph Catton – about treatment of diseases
  • After evening stroll, spoke with friends arriving from Portland and Seattle and answered their questions
  • Spoke with friends about the Báb and Bahá’u’lláh
October 22
  • Visited the Greek Theater at the University of California in Berkeley
  • Addressed children and gave them 2 handfuls of marshmallows
  • Met with Seattle friends, Professor Rogers and mother, Mrs. Saxter, Mrs. Marie Beckwith, Mrs. McElwee, Miss Angeline Haste (interpretation of a dream at California Street residence
  • Spoke with one friend about sacrifice
  • Inscribed Mrs. Grosse’s Bible at California Street residence
  • Met with friends and had lunch and dinner at the Goodall Oakland home
  • Bade farewell to the friends in an evening talk and took each one by the hand
  • Remained in Oakland overnight
October 23
  • Spoke with members of the “Peach Tree” group (Miss Ramona Allen, Betty Vent and Marie Bar)
  • Mrs. Munroe’s friends from Berkeley, Mrs. Weiman, and Miss Charlotte D’Evelyn at Mrs. Goodall’s Oakland home
  • Was photographed outdoors in a group of East Indian University of California students, and when developed, only showed light around His head and shoulders
  • Met with a group of Oakland believers with their children
  • Spoke with a gathering about the importance of teaching in the afternoon
  • Visited the Greek Theatre at the University of California in Berkeley
  • Spoke with a group of young Bahá’ís who were teachers of the Cause on His way back to San Francisco
  • Bade farewell to the friends at California Street residence
October 24
  • Received guests for interviews and talks including Seattle people and Mrs. King and others at the California Street residence
  • Drove to Golden Gate Park to a lake with lawn about it
  • Spoke with friends at noon about His thoughts at the park recalling His sad childhood memory of seeing Bahá’u’lláh coming out of the Siyah Chal dungeon
October 25
  • Bid farewell at 8 AM to friends gathered early in the morning at 1815 California Street
  • Departed from the house at 9 AM with sadness for Oakland railway station accompanied by a few friends
  • Departed from Oakland in a chair car to Sacramento, accompanied by a few friends
  • Visited with friends on the train and completed an article about the history of Bahá’u’lláh’s time  \and His teachings
  • Arrived in Sacramento at noon
  • Accepted the invitation of Miss Christine Frazer at the Home of Truth in Sacramento to grace her home by His presence and took lunch there before going to the Hotel Sacramento where friends were waiting for him
  • Spoke with F. R. Hinkle, reporter of the “Sacramento Union” at Hotel Sacramento at 5PM
  • Spoke with audiences in the parlor mezzanine floor at 7:30 PM
  • Spoke publicly at the Hotel Sacramento
  • Spoke again at 9:15 PM
October 26
  • Spoke with 3 maids in the Hotel Sacramento in the morning and gave them fragrant perfume and some fruits
  • Gave second address at the Hotel Sacramento
  • Met with a women conveying a message from Japanese believers in Portland and replied to them
  • Spoke to an audience in the Assembly Hall of the Hotel Sacramento at 9:30 AM
  • Interviewed by reporter, W. A. Lawson, from the Sacramento Bee
  • Drove through the countryside and took a walk through the ornamental State Capitol grounds
  • Hosted a farewell luncheon with more than 50 friends at Hotel Sacramento to which the hotel manager was invited and given a seat
  • Bestowed kindness up each friend, exhorting and admonishing them until His departure
  • Departed for Denver, Colorado
  • Told humorous stories and praised the countryside, pleasant air and beauty of the surroundings
  • Spoke with railway employees, a salesman, a Jewish lady and two individuals with socialist views on the train
  • Spoke more deeply again with the Jewish lady after she returned to be educated to be able to convey the teachings to others